It’s a wonderful fall day here in Southern California. Today is my husband Noe’s birthday, and I talked him into playing hooky and going to Disneyland with me today! It’s not all play – we’ve got the Disneyland Photo Update assignment this week, so will be looking for something to write about.

History at Hand at Van Eaton

The next day is Mickey and Minnie Mouse’s birthdays, and along with celebrations on ABC, the various and sundry Disney channels, Disney apps, Disney websites and Disney parks, Van Eaton Galleries will have a breathtaking live auction of Disneyland souvenirs and other ephemera, including an extremely historic and rare piece of Imagineering history that was literally saved from the trash heap of history by a friend’s akamai (smart) grandmother. His grandfather worked at the Studios and pitched in at Disneyland circa New York World’s Fair-to-Disneyland era, mid-60s.

full hand

He is hoping that it will find a home with someone who appreciates its important place in history and who is equipped to curate it properly. Me too. I put the gigantic versions of the photos up here on purpose. Get a good look at this beauty. Those WED Imagineers cobbled him together with machine, auto and handmade metal parts, and what they couldn’t find there, they literally carved out of wood. This is a perfect example of the seat-of-the-pants creativity that WED Imagineering pioneered, back in the day.

lincoln fist

To make a bid online or find out about the upcoming live auction, go to

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Disney’s The Jungle Book 3D Collector’s Edition Brings Home New Fun

The picture on the front is lenticular 3D!
The picture on the front is lenticular 3D!

This fantastic holiday-ready package includes the original theatrical release on Blu-ray 3D™, Blu-ray™, Digital HD and DVD, along with originally released bonus features and five never-before-seen extras. It hit the stores and online shopping sites this week.

Bonus features include*:


  • The Bare Necessities: From the Jungle to the Bayou – Travel to the heart of New Orleans to swing with composer John Debney, Bill Murray and jazz greats Dr. John, Kermit Ruffins and the rest of their lively band, as they perform another version of “The Bare Necessities.”
  • The Return of a Legend – Award-winning songwriter and Disney Legend Richard Sherman co-wrote the music from “Mary Poppins,” “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” and Walt Disney’s animated classic “The Jungle Book.” Watch as director Jon Favreau and Sherman collaborate to create additional lyrics and record a demo for the new version of the classic song, “I Wan’na Be Like You.”
  • The Jungle Effect – Experience more visual effects magic in this sequence that shows the evolution of key moments from “The Jungle Book.”
  • Developing Kaa – See an early animatic that played a part in the development of the scene where Mowgli meets Kaa and learns more about the tale of the “red flower.”
  • “The Jungle Book” Around the World – Join the global celebration as Mowgli and Baloo sing “The Bare Necessities.”
  • Classic Bonus Features**
    • “The Jungle Book” Reimagined – Favreau sits down with producer Brigham Taylor and visual effects supervisor Robert Legato to discuss “The Jungle Book” and reflect on the years they devoted to the reimagining of this timeless tale. Discover how Rudyard Kipling’s original stories and the classic animated film influenced their unique approach, witness the technical wizardry that enabled the team to create a believable and thrilling movie-going experience, and learn how they borrowed a page from Walt Disney’s innovation playbook to make it all happen. Lastly, meet theall-star voice cast who help bring the film’s colorful characters to life, as well as the musicians who accent theadventure with a majestic music score.
    • I Am Mowgli – Follow the extraordinary journey of 12-year-old Neel Sethi, who was selected from thousands of hopefuls worldwide to play Mowgli “alongside” some of today’s biggest movie stars. Get a glimpse of Neel’s life before Hollywood came calling, check out his audition that sealed the deal, and see how a close-working relationship with Favreau brought out his best. Plus, Neel shares how filming “The Jungle Book” was one wild ride, from working alongside imaginary animals to performing some super-fun stunts.
    • King Louie’s Temple: Layer by Layer – So, exactly how do you create a musical number featuring one man-cub, a massive, legendary ape and an army of wild and wily monkeys in the Seeonee jungle? Viewers are granted rare and unique access to the development of the “I Wan’na Be Like You” sequence in which King Louie attempts to coerce Mowgli into giving up Man’s deadly “red flower” (fire). A fast-moving musical progression reel showcases storyboards, animatics, Christopher Walken’s recording session and visual effects layers, which ultimately merge to form one of thefilm’s most memorable scenes.
    • Audio Commentary – Favreau delivers his scene-by-scene perspective on the live-action adventure “The Jungle Book” with all the candor and humor you’d expect from this multi-talented actor-writer-director-producer.

* Bonus features may vary by retailer. New bonus content is available in the 3D Collector’s Edition package only.

**Classic bonus from the initial August 2016 release of “The Jungle Book”

The above is the official information; here’s my take. Get this. If you’re reading this site, you’re a Disney fan. This is a really good film for Disney fans in the first place and this package is the absolute best. It’s got all all ALL of the extras, and that’s the best reason to pick up this edition (and they’re fantastic extras: John Debney with Dr. John! Richard Sherman! Character design! Things that are actually relevant and interesting!). Second, in the next couple of years, you might get a 3D TV and try to buy this and it may have gone into the vault, and then you’ll go on eBay and turn green when you see the price there, mutter “I guess Lisa doesn’t need braces.” to yourself and click BUY NOW. Finally, so many of us are completionists. That’s why the Disney Movie Club exists. Because there are some of us who literally cannot sleep at night because they don’t have every single version of every single video. I feel you. You can have my VHS of So Dear to My Heart when you pry it from my cold, dead hands. It’s family-friendly, it’s a fun movie, the extras are great, it makes a thoughtful holiday gift, and it’s nice to keep for yourself.

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Finding Dory Finds Her Way Home on Blu-ray and DVD


My family actually stopped me from seeing this film in theaters because they thought it might upset me, so we waited until now. Like Dory, I have a disability that includes memory problems. I don’t know if I would have gotten more or less emotional about those parts, but I definitely used up the tissues while watching. And now I understand all those Baby Dory gifs Anthony Hays sent me on Messenger every time he wanted me to do something. You know, the one with the HUGE EYES? Ugh, Pixar, with the emotions already!

Here’s a Q&A with Ty Burrell  (voice of “Bailey”)  and Kaitlin Olson (voice of “Destiny”). They actually sent me his for the DVD/digital debut in late October while I was still out of commission, but it’s pretty cool, so I thought you might like to see it.

I have learned that when I review home entertainment, nobody cares about the film because they already saw it in the theater. It’s all about the extras, and Disney doesn’t disappoint. Do they ever? I think the only time I’ve seen a non-Disney movie deliver as well was Tropic Thunder. Not in amount, but in originality.

Here’s the official scoop:

Bonus features include*:
Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray & Digital HD:
  • Theatrical Short: “Piper” – A hungry sandpiper hatchling ventures from her nest for the first time to dig for food by the shoreline. The only problem is that the food is buried beneath the sand where scary waves roll up onto the shore.
  • Marine Life Interviews (All-New Mini Short) – Meet the inhabitants of the Marine Life Institute as they remember our favorite blue tang.
  • The Octopus That Nearly Broke Pixar – Pixar’s “Team Hank” unravels the challenges, frustrations, and rewards of bringing to life the studio’s crankiest and most technically complicated character ever.
  • What Were We Talking About? – This piece showcases the complex routes Dory’s story took as the filmmakers worked to construct a comprehensive narrative involving a main character with short-term memory loss.
  • Casual Carpool – What’s it like to commute with the voices of Marlin, Charlie, Bailey and Hank? Join “Finding Dory” writer/director Andrew Stanton as he drives Albert Brooks, Eugene Levy, Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill to work.
  • Animation & Acting – How do you create a connection between a human audience and a fish? This behind-the-scenes look behind the curtain examines the process of constructing believable performances through a unique collaboration between the director, voice actors and animators.
  • Creature Features – The cast of “Finding Dory” share cool facts about the creatures they voice in the film.
  • Deep in the Kelp – Disney Channel’s Jenna Ortega guides us on a research trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium to show how far the “Finding Dory” crew went to make Dory’s world feel real.
  • Skating & Sketching with Jason Deamer – “Finding Dory” character art director Jason Deamer talks about how he got to Pixar, how he draws the characters in the film, and how falling off a skateboard teaches you lessons you can use in art and life.
  • Dory’s Theme – A spirited discussion among the composer, music editor and director of “Finding Dory” about the musical elements that shape Dory’s quirky and joyful theme.
  • Rough Day on the Reef – Sometimes computers make mistakes. Here you’ll see some of the funny, creepy and just plain bizarre footage the crew encountered while making “Finding Dory.”
  • Commentary – Director Andrew Stanton, co-director Angus MacLane and producer Lindsey Collins deliver their personal perspective on “Finding Dory.”
  • Deleted Scenes (introduced by director Andrew Stanton)
    • Losing Nemo – While watching the stingray migration, Dory starts to follow two fish that remind her of her parents, leaving Nemo all alone.
    • Little Tension in Clown Town – In this alternate version of the film, Dory tries to “follow her fins” to her parents, but ends up in a strange place with even stranger fish fashion.
    • Dory Dumped – In this early version of the story, Dory’s parents had short-term memory loss as well.
    • Sleep Swimming – Dory begins to talk and swim in her sleep, revealing what seem to be clues to her past.
    • Meeting Hank – Wandering the Marine Life Institute’s elaborate pipe system, Dory happens upon the abode of Hank the cranky octopus.
    • The Pig – Frantically navigating the pipes of the Marine Life Institute in search of her parents, Dory crosses paths with a terrifying cleaning device.
    • Starting Over – Director Andrew Stanton presents four different versions of the movie’s opening scene to illustrate the filmmakers’ search for the best way to introduce Dory’s backstory and to connect this new film to “Finding Nemo.”
    • Tank Gang (Digital exclusive) – After a close encounter with a squid leaves them separated from Dory, Marlin and Nemo unexpectedly meet up with the Tank Gang from “Finding Nemo,” who make it their mission to get to the Marine Life Institute … by any means necessary.
    • Hidden Seacrets of Finding Dory (Digital exclusive) – Take a deep dive to catch secret Easter Eggs throughout the movie.  And just like Hank, they’re hidden in plain sight.
  • Theatrical Short: Piper & Commentary

Some more treats to celebrate the release:

Power to the Octopuses Octopi


LUCKY NUMBER SEVEN – When designers were working on Hank, the cantankerous octopus in “Finding Dory,” they created tapered tentacles for the cephalopod. The tentacles were modeled separately from the body, but when they tried to attach them, only seven would fit. Filmmakers later decided that it made sense that Hank would have an affliction, so they worked it into the script.


Suckers are found on Hank: 50 suckers on each of his seven arms. 


Rigging prims were created just for Hank’s simulation (the average character requires around 20). 


Weeks were required of the team of technical directors who were responsible for building and articulating Hank.


Weeks were spent shading Hank to give him extra texture and color, as well as making it possible for him to camouflage himself. (An average character takes less than eight weeks.)

Dory’s Origin

“Magic Trick” clip

Concept Art Gallery

Dory Thinks She’s Home

Tank Gang

Finally, some film stills which I’m sure will be the highlight of this column for you trivia fans.


NOSTALGIC WHEELS – The truck that is featured late in the movie features a logo from the 1986 short “Luxo, Jr.” produced by Pixar and directed by John Lasseter. The short’s success helped launch the studio, and the image of the desk lamp appears in Pixar’s iconic logo today. k421_17cs.sel16.168
  • The license plate on the truck sports A113, which is reminiscent of the CalArts classroom for first-year graphic design and character animation where many of the artists and animators at Pixar began to build their craft. 
  • Sets Art Director Don Shank’s name can be seen in the truck’s grill.


TAG IT – The tags donned by the lazy sea lions snoozing outside the Marine Life Institute together bear the iconic A113. While Rudder’s tag reads A1, Fluke’s says 13.


FIELD TRIP – Riley from 2015’s “Inside Out” appears in a group of kids touring the Marine Life Institute. She is clearly featured in a frame with Dory.


MAP IT – The registration number for the zodiac boat that picks up Dory in the bay outside the Marine Life Institute is PA1200, which represents Pixar’s address: 1200 Park Avenue.

Have You Felt It?

Today I got a very special Collector’s Set in the mail, which I’m going to devour and write about this weekend for publication next week:


Lord Vader, it’s beautiful. The photo doesn’t begin to do it justice. Here’s a couple from

force-awakens-3d-3-sm-1024x576 force-awakens-3d-sm-1536x864-737177147250

Four disks, gorgeous artwork, all sorts of special stuff and a Tooka in a pear tree. It’s out now, Go buy it and we’ll Fab’s Book Club about it. The artwork you don’t see: Rey kicking unmasked Kylo’s adorbs, Rey and Finn running from explosions and “Chewie, we’re home!” Le sigh. And I haven’t unpacked it yet!

Fabulous Things are Coming Your Way!


Every year (this being the second) I put together a list of holiday gift ideas, Shelly’s Fabulous Things. Do you have an idea for something you think would make a perfect gift? Are you an creator or representative? Drop me a line at [email protected]


Thank You!

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